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Examples of transferable skills from biochemistry

A training in biochemistry develops both good literacy and numeracy skills that are relevant to a wide range of careers.

Further, any course involving training in biochemistry will develop the key practical skills and technical competencies required to become a scientist in areas that include healthcare, industry and research. Biochemists learn how to apply advanced numerical skills and statistical analysis to solve problems involving biological data, and to write up findings accurately, clearly and concisely, in the appropriate style.

A training in biochemistry will also provide numerous opportunities to develop a broad range of transferable skills that are keenly sought after by potential employers, both within the bioscience sector and beyond. This broad range of skills has also enabled biochemistry graduates to progress successfully into wide-ranging careers in teaching, business and law.

Table 1, Examples of transferable skills.

This table has been taken from career resources produced by the Biochemical Society (Copyright Biochemical Society).

Competencies Description Example(s)
Communication The transfer of information verbal or written. An important part of communication is also listening. Customer service roles, working on a student newspaper/blog, presenting research.
Problem solving and creativity Ability to think outside the box and creatively approach a task to successfully complete it. Developing new procedures to streamline a project, finding a solution to a problem in the laboratory.
Analytical and research skills Ability to think critically, analyse and assess information and collect data. Writing critical reviews and laboratory reports, final year project in the lab.
Proactive thinking and self-motivation Ability to anticipate difficulties and take action without instruction at every step. Timely submission of an assignment despite unforeseen circumstances.
Leadership and management Ability to manage a motivate a team to meet targets and deadlines. Being the president of a society, of a social group or a sport team captain.
Teamwork Ability to work well with others, being reliable and supportive. Group assignments, being a member of s sports team or university society.
Planning, organising and time management Ability to plan, manage and prioritise multiple tasks to complete them by a deadline. Meeting coursework deadlines, organising an event, combining a degree with a job.
Interpersonal skills Ability to interact with a range of people in a professional manner. Customer service job, being part of a team, outreach work within your community.
IT and technical skills Confidence in using technology and specific scientific technologies. Using Excel to manage budgets, lab experience.

For more information regarding a career in Biochemistry, you can access the Biochemical Society Career Guide

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This article is from the free online course:

Biochemistry: the Molecules of Life

UEA (University of East Anglia)